Earth is moving into autumn, and things are changing. The kids have gone back to school. Summer vacations and adventures are over. The air is crisp and cool. The forests are bursting with brilliant colors. Halloween and Thanksgiving are around the corner. There is something both beautiful and mysterious about these gateway times when nature transitions to a new season. It is functional but also elegant and even magical.
Autumn is a time of reflection. We think of the past with nostalgia. When I (Jeff) was a missionary at age 20, I was young, idealistic, and full of life. I naively believed I had the answers, enabling me to help other people with their problems, while I coasted along in my own trouble-free life. I believed life would be an endless Summer.
Over the years that followed, disappointments with my career and losing an election, a business, and a long-term marriage took some wind out of my sails. At age 42, I was a broke, devastated, single dad who longed to be hopeful again. These are a few reflections on that time:
“Perhaps I had to lose everything to really appreciate my life when those blessings were eventually restored to me. I take nothing for granted anymore. Of course, I still try to help people, but this time out of a reservoir of painful experience. I don’t assume I have all the answers anymore, or that they are always obvious or simple. But, looking back, I know how a lot of extra pain could have been avoided and how I could have achieved peace and happiness faster after loss. That’s the reason we wrote Intentional Courtship and why we are life coaches. We minister out of our own pain and teach people how to find the joy of redemption. As an enthusiastic 20-year-old, I couldn’t relate to good people whose lives were turned upside down. Now, I understand. After losing that idealistic part of me, I happily report that I am hopeful and optimistic again. I am grateful for all I have learned and for abundant blessings that have been restored. My Father in Heaven knew the man I needed to become and provided the path for me. Real hope grew out of pain and suffering.”
Friends, in the middle of Fall activities, Halloween parties, back to school nights, and preparing for the holidays, take a moment to pause and reflect about all that is good in your life, and your hopes and dreams for the future. We experience joy to the degree that we appreciate all that is good. We enjoy anything we have to the degree that we appreciate it. May we all reflect on the changing seasons of our lives and find meaning and joy in our journeys.
FREE NEW INTERVIEW
Enjoy this month’s insightful interview with therapist, church leader, and not yet married single Kathryn Reynolds. She shares reflective thoughts about faith, confidence, ambiguous loss, trusting heaven, thinking about our various life circumstances in ways that affirm our unique paths, attracting people into our lives who are good for us, and knowing God cares about our desires and wants us to have joy.
LILY Pod: Singles in the Church with Kathryn Reynolds (LISTEN)
LILY Tube: Singles in the Church with Kathryn Reynolds (WATCH)
LILY Coaching is available to support you individually. Simply visit loveinlateryears.com to schedule a FREE Consult with Jeff or Cathy. We will provide you with a roadmap to your desired destination!
To heal from relationship loss and create more love in your life, read Intentional Courtship (available on Amazon).
If you enjoy this letter, forward to a friend. Our goal is to support as many single adults and later-married couples as possible so please share this letter with those you love!
About the Author
Jeff Teichert, and his wife Cathy Butler Teichert, are the founders of “Love in Later Years,” which ministers to Latter-day Saint single adults seeking peace, healing, and more joyful relationships. They are co-authors of the Amazon bestseller Intentional Courtship: A Mid-Singles Guide to Peace, Progress and Pairing Up in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Jeff and Cathy each spent nearly a decade in the mid-singles community and they use that experience to provide counsel and hope to mid-singles and later married couples through written articles, podcasts, and videos. Jeff and Cathy are both Advanced Certified Life Coaches and have university degrees in Family & Human Development. They are the parents of a blended family that includes four handsome sons, one lovely daughter-in-law, and a sweet baby granddaughter.
Purchase Jeff & Cathy’s book Intentional Courtship:
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